University of Edinburgh

Developing Writing Programmes for Deaf/Hard of Hearing Learners: What Really Matters?

Presented on Thursday 29 November 2007

Course evaluation summary

Number of Participants: 34
Number of Respondents: 32

Overall Assessment: 

How would you rate the following: Excellent = 1; Poor = 5

Enhancement to your expertise


Content and supplementary material


How will you use what you have learned today?

Try to persuade management in my school (24 deaf, 130 hearing) to have the courage to differentiate the curriculum with respect to the content of this course regarding the relationship between talking and writing.
By promoting the ideas and methods presented within my working environment (oral deaf setting). This will include joint feedback to staff along with my teaching colleague who is also here today. Note: children are in exclusively oral education by parental choice.
Gallaudet resource. IEP targets. Check with individual students understanding and great writing analysis.
In my everyday teaching practice for all my pupils, 5 years to 18 years.
Useful for setting up programmes for individuals/assessing stage of development, etc.
To understand writing development in my own school with our HI pupils (5 in all).
I will share this info with other work colleagues and be more analytical of pupils' English skills.
In the classroom and in discussion with colleagues.
To inform my own teaching practice as well as to develop school-wide policies and practice.
I will use it in teacher training course and to guide me to read more.
I am keen to use some of the strategies discussed today within the classroom as a way of developing language/writing skills of children.
Apply practical advice, eg, writing strategies to classroom practice.
The generic aspects lend themselves to endless possibilities throughout the age ranges.
With the child, staff and HT/support group working as a team with the hearing impaired child I came today for.  Also as an ASN teacher I can use many strategies/ideas with my bilingual/ASN children with specific language difficulties.
It has raised my awareness sufficiently to think more carefully about literacy among D/HH children. (I am a mainstream English teacher who has previously got hung up on endings of words and omitted words, almost exclusively.)
I will reconsider the balance of my use of English forms when working with pupils on writing pieces. I will be using the analysis of written language proforma.
Source some of the recommended resources for CPD in my establishment.
To plan and hopefully improve my pupils' written tasks.
Discuss with colleagues at work and adapt what we do in taking forward written English skills of our pupils.
Moving on from narrative sooner to expository text and use of literate discourse. Sign cloze.
As I am a newly qualified teacher I have found all the information gained today of interest. I will pass on key parts to the other members in my team.
To teach 2 particular pupils I required advice to help them with writing programmes but I will use what I have learned today with all children I support.
Useful strategies for teaching writing and awareness of new resources.
Discussions with other members of services. In my day-to-day practice.
On return I will be able to put into practice the information I have learned today with the pupils I teach.
Rethink my approach to children's writing. Take ideas and strategies discussed today back in my classroom practice. Share with colleagues.
Apply strategies to teaching deaf pupils.
Share with Teacher of the Deaf - implement at home.
Share with colleagues - discuss and enable better practice - try to persuade class teachers to set more achievable targets for HI students.
I will use what I have learned today in my planning for my pupils and I will also share what I've learned with my colleagues.
This has given me lots to think about and I will definitely put some of this into practice with one of my pupils. Certainly more in the future.

How would you rate the following: Excellent = 1; Poor = 5

pClarity of presentation


Pacing of course/event


What was best about the course/event?

The content was based on both research and practice. Excellent presentation, realistic and unbiased.
A great deal of 'common sense' with a useful framework - all based on a mixture of practice and research. Lots of practical suggestions which will be of great benefit to the deaf children I work with including 15+ cochlear implanted.
Systematic approach and identification of the prerequisites to writing for deaf children in detail.
Everything!! Superb!
Gave wide range of strategies - lots of practice advice.
The course has provided me with an insight into the levels an HI child goes through when learning to write.
Hard to say - all very informative.  Could identify with many of the speaker's experiences.
The expertise of the presenter to teaching and academia.
Clear and coherent presentation style. Practical links of theory to teaching methods.
Thorough and up-to-date overview of reasons for using a bridge from sign to writing. The analysis of the tool was the strongest section - really useful for teachers.
Was very interesting and informative and explained in a very clear manner.
Connie's expertise and sharing her experiences in a realistic and down-to-earth manner.
Fascinating!  Brilliant! Practical/common sense/workable from someone who is experienced both as a teacher and a researcher.
Without being OTT - it was all excellent - intro/presentation/speaker/lunch/pace and challenge of the day - 100%.
The clarity of the deliverer.
Some of the practical examples given were very useful. The analysis of written text proforma was extremely useful.
Practitioner perspective.
A real expert with great practical ideas to support theory.
To listen to a practitioner who really "knew her stuff" and could give us lots of practical ideas to take back to work and try out.
Connie's enthusiasm, passion.  Re-ignited mine!
Connie Mayer engaged me throughout the day - wonderful speaker.
Interesting, relevant and practical.
Setting academic context from an international perspective.
Excellent speakers, practice advice.
To be given an insight as to how D/HH children see writing as a difficult task.
Someone who clearly has a lot of experience but has been there and can relate practically to situations instead of simply referring to literature.
Relevant to my teaching.
'Practical' language - related to work-place experience which did not rely on jargon. The speaker's knowledge and understanding.
Connie was very good at giving explanations and also the strategies given will be very helpful.
Listening to Connie's expertise and seeing examples of deaf pupilswriting.  Very similar to my own pupils'

What, if anything, could have been improved about the course?

Perhaps a better balance between signing and oral focus. I felt that the emphasis tended to be on the signing child, whereas the oral deaf child will usually have delayed language/reduced vocabulary/knowledge or structure, etc, also, and needs more time to 'catch up'.
More time, more of this information and at this level of content and accessibility.
Some of the handouts had slides missing.  A follow-on to practical strategies with Deaf/HI pupils in developing writing would be useful.
More workshop activities. Connie didn't consider enough the ways BSL/ASL uses a range of literate genres, but this didn't diminish the value of her presentation.
It would have been interesting to see some of the teaching methods in practice through the use of video/DVD, etc.
What a shame it could not have been over a few days! Perhaps not pack so much in - not enough time to take notes and think over or notes in pack.
Two days! To explore more.
Time for group discussions? An earlier start would have been helpful.
There was so much good stuff it could have run to two days.
Coffee/tea in room would have been nice.
I found the handouts a little difficult to follow. Maybe a copy of Connie's slides would be of use.
Perhaps a second day.
Note taking a bit frantic - would have been able to concentrate more on the oral content if a handout of the presentation had been included in the pack.

Any other comments regarding the course?

A very stimulating and interesting day!
Although as experienced teachers we may know this, it is great to have it presented in such an informative way.
Thank you, very enjoyable day - confirmed some approaches (reassuring).
I haven't been to a SSC course prior to today, but I shall certainly try to extend my personal knowledge by attending other courses as this has been so useful.
Great course. Would like more like these.
Well organised. Excellent speaker.
Liked the cartoons! Clear, Excellent, well-paced delivery.
Please can we have more of Connie! Assessment, etc, more indepth.
It was well managed and run from application to evaluation and communication was clear throughout.  The speaker was absolutely super - thank you.
Although I am an English teacher, I did not know/appreciate the facts about literacy and emergent literacy. These I found quite disturbing, but also explanatory, eg, Why don’t some pupils improve/make progress in S1/2? (in literacy)
This course was an interesting presentation which highlighted some challenging questions for the teaching of English in a sign bilingual setting.
Very interesting presentation - a very good presenter.
A very enjoyable day - many thanks.
Delivery and enthusiasm of Connie was super. Very easy to listen to. Well-structured talk, mixed with humour.
This could have been run over two days giving more depth and 'hands on' evaluation of pieces of writing.
Thoroughly enjoyed the course, found it extremely interesting and worthwhile. A very quick day!
Highlights issues between signing and written English.
Handouts did not cover every slide.
Well worth the long journey.
The course was excellent and information very relevant to what I need in my own practice.

Location and Venue

Convenient location for this course: No Response 11; Yes 16; No 5

But would like some courses run in other places.
Excellent = 1; Poor = 5

Convenience of venue


Quality of venue


Likely to attend if venue was used again: 32

What other CPD training would you like the SSC to provide?

Cochlear implants - specific issues, eg, rehabilitation.
More of the quality/calibre of expert knowledge in other aspects of deaf education.
Other courses, BSL to English - Reading and Writing (similar to today's with presentations backed by research evidence).
Video modelling some of the strategies Connie discussed.
Strategies for teaching English as a foreign language.
Assessment of writing - Connie Mayer.
Something (more?) on the thought-processes of D/HH, difficult as these may be to identify or research. I feel more enlightened after today, however.
Would like to attend more but finance and distance make this difficult. Probably ICT and deaf education (I know you have done this).
Practical courses on reading/writing supporting deaf pupils in mainstream setting (peripatetic).
Saturday courses would allow teacher to count the hours on the CPD.

Outcomes Assessment

If you are a teacher, how would you rate this course in relation to the following "Chartered Teacher Standard" components:
Very useful = 1; Not useful = 5

your professional values and personal commitment


your professional knowledge and understanding


your professional and personal attributes